I pledge to be a responsible angler that keeps our fisheries healthy and clean. I vow to:
1. Have respect for every fish that I catch.
I understand that every fish I catch is a living, breathing organism. I show respect by either handing the fish carefully and releasing it back to the wild, or by killing it swiftly before I harvest. I feel gratitude for every fish that I catch.
2. Release breeders in order for future generations of fish to flourish
If you kill the cow, there won’t be any more milk. Smithsonian researchers have shown that plus-sized females invest disproportionately more in the number of eggs and the size of individual eggs than smaller fish. Therefore, taking a single big fish has a greater impact on the fish population than taking multiple small ones.
(Further reading: Here
3. Never keep fish that I can’t identify
I understand that if I choose to keep a fish I can’t identify, I risk removing an endangered or otherwise illegally-kept species from our waters. Not only could I be harming the ecosystem, but I could end up with a big fat ticket!
4. Follow fishing regulations–they are meant to help the sustainability of our fishery
Fishing regulations exist to protect marine life from being overfished until extinction. These regulations aren’t here just to make money off of recreation anglers.I feel very fortunate to be living in a country that can help protect the wildlife and maintain a world class fishery. If my country does not prioritize sustainability, I will lead as an example to my community.
5. Be mindful of how much plastic I use while fishing
I’m not saying I’m stopping using plastic forever, I’m saying that I am going to stay mindful of how much plastic I use. I know plastic is an overwhelming problem for waters all over the world, and I can help in a small way by limiting my use of plastic artificial baits, lures and plastic bags. I will not let my trash fly away in the wind. I don’t want to contribute to pollution if I can help it. Sometimes the situation calls for plastic baits, but most of the time I can get the same job done using Squidy Bits.
I take this Fishing Pledge in an effort to make the world a better place with more sustainable fishing. I will apply these vows in my personal life and lead as an example to my community.
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